SRK’s speech at Yale University

Actor Shah Rukh Khan, arrived in the US to visit the Yale University accompanied by Nita Ambani yesterday. Mr Khan, who has been named a Chubb Fellow, addressed the students at the university. Here’s the full transcript of Mr Khan’s speech.

Good evening everyone, I’d like to thank you all for giving me the opportunity to be here. I also want to thank Isha for following up with the most disorganised and incommunicative person in the world in order to fix today’s meeting with all of you. Thanks I really am honoured and extremely happy to be here.

I have memories of being in Yale five years ago. It was December and so damn cold that while professing love to my leading lady and singing a Bollywood ditty, which went something like this – Kabhie Alvida Na Kehna – my mouth froze itself to death. I say death because as I inched closer to kiss her, mouthing the words Kabhi Alvida Na… my mouth and jaw just got locked.

So I am hoping my second outing to your wonderful university turns out differently because it would be highly embarrassing if I said “good evening Yaleites” or “Yalers” or whatever you guys are called, and got stuck at…yaaaaa….that wouldn’t make for much of a speech.

I was told not to dwell too much on my movies when I speak to you, I am to give you an inspirational talk- tell you stuff you can think about when you leave this room.

That worries me, it gives me performance anxiety. Here you are, 1500 of you, hoping to hear words of wisdom from this sexy, desirable man, who couldn’t kiss a girl, last time he was in Yale because it was too cold. But I’m not that guy, I mean, I’m sexy and desirable for sure but I’m not about to leave you anymore inspired than when you walked in here.

I read this lame joke on Google the other day (yes I pick everything up from Google, even the script of my next movie and I’m not ashamed of it – you can pick me up on Google too if you like!).

Anyway, the joke went like this – a dying man, gasping for breath, desperately gestured to the priest by his side for a piece of paper. With great effort, he then wrote a few words on it, handed it to the priest and passed away. The priest kept the paper in his pocket and forgot all about it until the final service. Here he suddenly recalled the dead man’s last scribble. Unfolding the paper, he told the funereal congregation that he was about to read great words of inspiration to them. The piece of paper had these words on it – “You are standing on my oxygen tube…fool.”

So I am not going to be the priest tonight. Instead, I will tell you simple experiences of my life’s journey with simpler words, which may not leave you inspired, but will help you survive this life. And if you can do that – happiness, creativity and success will follow on its own – or maybe not but you will have to live this life nevertheless. Only I hope my words will give you enough insight so that you can tell the world, “hey guys you are standing on my oxygen tube…move over and let me breathe.”

Journeys can be defined by age and time or even by destinations, as most often they are. But I feel it is hard for me to tell the story of my life in those terms because the concept of time has always eluded me. The day my father died seemed longer than my entire childhood.

The day I felt my first success seemed fleeting, hour-long, not long enough perhaps. I wondered where it went. Even the cycle of time confounds me. I work the dark until sunrise on most days and fall asleep as the world awakens to light. My friends call me an owl, I like to think of myself as a bat…Batman…the prince of darkness.

Age is not my forte either, I still cannot fix my own – am I 45 or 15? If I could, would I be romancing girls one third my age, who normally would call me “uncle”.

I had so much fun collecting the action figures of my last film (called RA.One) that none of the critical reviews tanking it mattered to me.

As for my destination, I don’t think I ever knew one. I walk, I run, in the direction of my dreams. Things change along the way, people change, I change, the world changes, even my dreams change. I don’t have a place to arrive, I just keep doing what I know how to do the best that I can do it. I’ll probably end up a deluded geriatric in a wheelchair wearing a cape and tights, imagining my own flight out of this world, but of course with a young girl in my arms.

So I’ll tell you the story of me but I’ll tell it in my own way. In the language of my perceptions, in the things I think matter beyond fame and success and the dyeing of my hair. I have understood that the measure of my life lies in the expanse of my heart’s experience and nothing else matters, if you take anything out of it, good, otherwise I can put on music and dance to my last big hit song, have a drink and try and practice my kissing in the cold of Yale one more time.

However, I look at it in its eventual analysis, my life has centred around my creativity. I have assimilated the world through creative expression and in return the world has experienced me. I have grown to understand that on one hand the world will always uphold creativity as the most honest feeling possible.

On the other hand, the portents of fame (the glitz, the glamour, the wealth) that arise from this very recognition of creativity will always be questioned. Why do we do that? Because sometimes it allows us to feel better than the creator and sometimes, it fills a void within us that comes about by being in awe of his creation. Either way, it enables us to quantify his engagement with the world around him.

I am an actor; my life is a testament to this duality.

George Burns said that “acting is all about honesty”. If you can fake that, you’ve got it made. He couldn’t have defined it better. Honest and fake, yes that’s what I feel as a creative person all the time.

Let me tell you my schizophrenia.

Creative expression comes from the deepest experience of the artist himself. A good artist cannot be separate from his creation. Good art is honest art. A man may be an artist, a writer, a sculptor, an actor or a totem pole carver. Whatever he is, if what he creates is true to himself, it becomes a vivid testimonial to human creativity. If it lacks honesty, its entire premise is a waste.

At the same time, and quite paradoxically, a man becomes distinct from his creation from the moment it is placed in the public domain. It no longer even belongs to him. So it comes from your gut and it is put out there for others to accept it or throw it in the gutter.

Many a nights, I have gone back home after receiving an award – pumped up and all happy – just to read that what I really deserved was the Golden Banana for Worst Actor Of The Year. I become heartbroken, angry and completely convinced that bananas and critics, both should have their skins peeled and fed to the monkeys.

I momentarily lose my ability to give and close up. And here’s where the trick is – when you are in this place of despair, where the world is staring you down into yourself – there’s only one thing you can do to survive – hang on to who you are inside. The world will be unkind to you, it will not be able to see you. You must learn at such times, to be able to see yourself.

Life as a creative person is like being on a tight rope. I begin to lose myself, in my own melodrama. It’s frustrating that I find myself living up to other people’s interpretation of what I ought to be. And when faced with dissent, I start losing my love affair with my audience. It becomes a tight balance act, to keep doing what I do best and not be bothered by the reactions of people I do it for, in the first place.

I dance harder and cartwheel longer and pirouette on my rope – stretched, taut, beneath my feet.

And I try not to slip, I can slide but never fall off. All this while, I have a smile on my face and signing autographs. All I am is a funambulist trying to balance my action and exterior reaction to my naked show of who I am inside.

I start to feel like a street artist, who feels his audience is just a bunch of pausing passers-by’s applauding out of a mixture of curiosity, pity or even disregard. Yet, when I am playing this real life illusion out, more often than not, my honest self is sitting in the audience, applauding my performance while laughing heartily at my own stupidity.

So my friends, learn to laugh at yourselves too. Never become cynical about yourself and your life. Becoming cynical about your life is the single most destructive thing you can do to it.

For you have to remember – creativity is your gift to the world. It was never meant to be barter for anything, not even appreciation. You have to dig deep, I do it while drinking vodka after vodka – listening to self-pitying, loser songs – you should find a less destructive way. However you do it, but you have to believe that you create only because this is the biggest gift you have to give to your world. Maybe that’s why we even say “God is a creator”.

It’s not about the cars or houses, it never was, those are peripherals. They never come about because of your talent or your creative outpourings. They come out of a business that people around you do. Those people are in the business of barter – not you. Yours is the business of giving and learning. Your work of art may never be complete in your lifetime. Your fulfilment will always lie in your creative expression not in its products.

So look beyond the brickbats, the critics and know within you that you always have a choice between barter and creation. Life as a creator will always be a tight rope.

Do not try to feed your stomach with creativity; it is food for your soul, not your stomach. Do not be afraid to defy conventions. Do not be afraid to destroy systems that kill art and your souls. Do not be afraid to be hungry. Do not be afraid to walk alone if necessary. Because on a tightrope we all walk alone. Remember, if you are a creator you are a funambulist and not very many people know that word, let alone be it.

Just as my life has centred around creativity, like every fellow human being’s, it has also centred around the wish to find happiness. Your age is the age when we most confuse happiness with gratification so I will say quite plainly: if you are smart, if you want to survive life’s relentless onslaught of challenges, you will sooner or later understand that the things that made you happy ten years ago will end up being the ones that make you happy when you hit the geriatric superhero stage. Kids, start collecting your action figures, now!

I have everything I could have aspired for at your age, I have success, I have fame, I have wealth and I have three play stations – one for the house – one for shootings and one just because I can have it. But none of these have any consequence to my happiness, the only thing that does is the love of my children.

You don’t have children (I hope), but you have parents, you have people you love and nothing in this world of everything, means more than that. Happiness, in other words, lies in the things you will never be able to count.

To me, it is no more than cuddling up to my kids and watching I Carly or The Family Guy. Well most of the time anyway, the other day my son and I stumbled upon the Kamasutra on the net and I can tell you that experience was not very happy. He’s 14 and he knew more about it than I did.

I want you to understand this business of happiness well because I know at one level, all parents are the actually the same. Some look sterner, some are less fun, some are embarrassingly weird but for each parent the bottom and the top line of their lives is this – you kids are their greatest source of happiness.

Parents want nothing in return, just that you respect that feeling, that’s all.

Take my own children. I believe that girls really are from planet Venus – my girl comes from a place of gentleness, caring, love, intelligence and all things beautiful. My boy comes from ‘I am too good to be your kid’ planet. Guys are obnoxious. I am not being sexist but that’s the truth.

I was in London shooting and missing my kids. Being from the boring school of people, who send writings to their kids in the hope of making them better human beings, I sent my daughter this verse from a poem by E E Cummings:

I do not know what it is about you that closes and opens,
only something in me understands
The voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses,
nobody, not even the rain,has such small hands

I instantly received this text message in return, “I love it papa. It is beautiful. I am going to write it in my secret diary with the secret lock and keep it in my secret hiding place, under the Katy Perry and Lady Gaga poster. I love you and miss you. I am too excited, watching The Hunger Games tonight.”

Feeling bad that I hadn’t texted something meaningful to my darling son I sent him something I had read too. “How are you my son,” I wrote. “I miss you. Do you know, a boy is someone that a mother loves the most. Little girls hate him. He is truth with dirt on its face, beauty with a cut on its finger, wisdom with smell in its hair and hope of the future with a frog in its pocket. I love you.”

He replied back with one letter of the alphabet. One measly “Y” to my emotional fatherly outpourings. That and an emoticon. I wanted to fly to Mumbai and hang him upside down till he looked liked a silly red faced emoticon himself. But I didn’t, instead I just smiled.

Both replies made me feel love for my kids. Whatever they do, as long as they are happy it makes me happy.

So I speak to you as a parent of two very weird kids. Whatever you do, whichever mistake you make, however you react to them, your parents are your best friends.

They might be boring, silly or stern at times. Maybe some of you are embarrassed of yours, I know my kids are of me, but if ever any of you are in trouble of any kind – the best friends you can always trust to watch your backs are your parents. They will always come good.

I lost my parents very early in my life and I miss them dearly. So, all of you who still have yours don’t listen to them, fool them if you must, a bit of lying is also welcome, but make sure you cherish what you have because when you don’t have them. Like me, you really miss someone to be rude to – someone to you can take for granted, someone to say and do whatever you wish with. You miss the comfort of being loved unconditionally. I call parents unconditional and forgiving punching bags, who feel happiest when they get bashed up by their kids.

If you want to survive life, it’s best to begin to respect the gift of love right now.

As children, your first teachers of this acceptance are your parents. If you are unable to accept the love they give you, in whatever form it arrives (even if it is a tight slap across your face), then when you become a parent, you will end up having to learn this lesson somewhat more harshly from teachers you give birth to – and learning Kamasutra from my son is a not a great idea – you would agree.

Incidentally he studies in a school that Isha’s mom runs in India. I have to say – ma’m your syllabus is quite different from the one I had when I was in school.

Whether I like it or not, my life has also been in constant play with what the world calls “Success”.

Success is a wonderful thing, but it tends not to be the sort of experience that we learn from. We enjoy it, perhaps we even deserve it. But we don’t acquire wisdom from it. And maybe that’s why it cannot be passed on either – me being successful does not mean my children will also be. No matter how much ever I teach them what I did in my life and even if they follow it to the letter.

So I feel that talking about how to become successful is a waste of time. Instead, let me tell you very honestly whatever happened to me happened because I have always been terrified of failure. I don’t want as much to succeed as much as I don’t want to fail.

I come from a very normal lower middle class family. I saw a lot of failure. My father was a beautiful man and the most successful failure in the world. My mother also failed to stay with me long enough for her to see me become a movie star. We were quite poor actually and let me tell you, poverty is not an ennobling experience at all. Poverty entails fear and stress and sometimes depression. I watched my parents go through this several times.

At an early age after my parents died, I equated poverty with failure. I just didn’t want to be poor. So when I got a chance to act in films it wasn’t out of any creative desire that I did so. It was purely out of the fear of failure and poverty. Most of the films I signed were discards of better known actors and the producers could not find anyone else to do them. I did them all to make sure that I was working to avoid unemployment. The timing or something was right, and that made them happen. I became a big star, which means sometimes our success is not the direct result of our actions. Success just happens. Really. It is accidental and we take credit for it, I know I have done this even out of embarrassment sometimes.

So I believe the true path to success is through the fear of failure. If you aren’t scared enough of failing, you are unlikely to succeed. It’s not pleasant to fail, it’s tough. All of us experience it. You will too if you haven’t already. Use it to succeed.

Here’s how I have done so:

1. Firstly, its not the absence of failure that makes you a success – it is your response to failure that actually helps to buffer the reverses that you experience. I personally have one response to failure – pragmatism – a recognition and belief that if one approach does not work, then the other will or might.

2. Failure also gives me an incentive to greater exertion – harder work, which invariably leads to later success in most cases.

3. Repeated failure has taught me to stop pretending I am someone else. It has given me the clarity to stick to the things that really matter to me instead of distracting me from my core.

4. Failure also gets you to find, who your real friends are. The true strength of your relationships only gets tested in the face of strong adversity.

5. Overcoming some of my failures has made me discover that I have a strong will and more discipline than I suspected. It has helped me have confidence in my ability to survive.

Failure is an amazing teacher. There is a well-known story of a bank president, who was asked the secret of his success. “Right decisions,” he replied. “How do you get to know how to make right decisions?” came the follow-up question. “Experience,” was the answer. “Well, how do you get experience?” asked his interrogator. “Wrong decisions,” he replied.

You have to know and learn that life is a not just a check list of acquisitions, attainments and fulfilments, your qualifications and CVs don’t really matter. Instead, life is difficult and complicated, and beyond anyone’s control. The humility to know this will help you survive its vicissitudes.

But I don’t want to sound dark. My hope for all of you is that you retain a lifelong love of learning, that you never cease to dream exciting and inspiring dreams, and when you fail, you fail well enough to succeed the next time. Don’t be afraid of being afraid, be afraid of not facing your fears and failures.

In the end I will read out a text message I got today from my kid – “Papa, Chuck Norris has trained his dog to pick up its own poop because Chuck Norris will not take shit from anyone.”

So remmber, you are fortunate enough to be a funambulist – who has an amazing set of punching bags – cherish them. And failure is your fiendish friend, keep him close, and don’t take no shit from anybody.

Bless you all and thanks for listening.

  1. Author
    sputnik 10 years ago

    Here is the link to the video for the speech. NDTV Videos start playing by themselves so I am not embedding the video.

  2. Author
    sputnik 9 years ago

    Shah Rukh Khan plagiarizes from speech by J.K. Rowling

    From J.K. to S.R.K., word sure travels uncredited!

    Yes, we’ve all been talking about Shahrukh Khan’s inspirational speech at AIMA. Some claim that it was one of the best speeches of his career, and the humility and honesty expressed in his speech and demeanor make him the true superstar that he is.

    I’m not a big fan of the man himself, but when I began to read the speech, I thought that it was mighty impressive (I was still on page 1 of a 3 page article). Then I read the second page, a part of which sounded eerily familiar, but I could not place it. When I finally came to the third page where Shahrukh Khan was concluding his speech, I was certain that I had read some bits of this somewhere.

    It was from J.K. Rowling’s commencement speech at Harvard in 2008, ‘The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination’. I would have to say that this is one of my favourite speeches of all time, largely because Rowling talks about failure, and how she learnt to accept it and most importantly, how she learnt her lesson from it and grew to be a better individual. She talks about poverty, about her family, her broken marriage – about her failures, and the benefits that came with it that made her who she is today.

    Mr. Shahrukh Khan also talked about his family, his poverty and also about his failures and the benefits that came with it in his speech, which were a little too similar to that of Ms. Rowling. No, scratch that. They were exactly the words of Ms. Rowling.

    Excerpt from J.K. Rowling’s speech where she talks about poverty:

    Source: Harvard Magazine

    While Shahrukh Khan also talks about how poverty is not an ennobling experience at all:

    Source: The Times of India

    And J.K. Rowling concluded her speech with these wise words:

    Source: Harvard Magazine

    And Shahrukh Khan decided that he will too:

    Source: The Times of India

    I hope your humility is helping you survive your failure’s vicissitudes, Mr. Khan. Because this is B.S.! Stealing someone’s speech is deplorable and keeping mum about its source is downright disgusting.

    I know many of you are probably thinking that it’s just a few lines that have been ripped off, but the man literally quoted those lines verbatim and didn’t even credit her for it. He came across as this humble and honest guy who spoke from his heart, while a couple of parts of his speech were clearly stolen.

    I don’t know if his speech writer messed up or he intentionally stole it; either way, I don’t like this one bit. And even if he did want to use parts of Rowling’s speech, the least he could have done was credit her or maybe paraphrase some of those lines, but no. The man concluded his speech with the choicest of words plucked from Rowling’s speech that earned him a standing ovation.

    Maybe he did have an impoverished childhood. Maybe he did live in poverty. Maybe he became the best that he could be after his failures. But does that justify blatantly stealing someone’s words without giving them due credit? This to me, is despicable and is honestly very insulting to Rowling. I hope the media stops singing praises of his speech and actually points out where the parts of brilliance in his speech actually were from.


  3. Reddemon 9 years ago

    Definately one of the most hillarious article.
    I want to look at his face and LMAO… 😆

    • Author
      sputnik 9 years ago

      I don’t know what you find hilarious about it. It is a clear case of plagiarism.

  4. Reddemon 9 years ago

    Writting such BS is itself hillarious. Even if it is palgarism i dont think SRK is responsible for it.

    Thank god he didnt saw GTPM trailor otherwise he would have said, imran khan said ‘jiyo aur jeene do’ and didnt credited and there are infinite number of examples. We always say the Quotes and move on. None says ‘old is gold’ by XYZ.. Etc. Intellectuals expect many things from others but sit all their life being a Journalist.

    There are many other problems and these journalist should try something better.

    • Author
      sputnik 9 years ago

      Why is SRK not responsible for it? Did he not write his speech?

      He did not quote a old proverb that everyone knows. He did not even quote lines from Harry Potter which he can claim everyone knows. He copied lines from the author’s speech and tried to pass off as his own by adding his parents part to it.

      Nobody cares about plagiarism in India but its not the same everywhere. Kavya Vishwanathan was in news when she plagiarized passages from other novels and her novel was withdrawn.

      “The publisher Little, Brown and the author Kaavya Viswanathan have agreed to withdraw all editions of her chick-lit novel, “How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild and Got a Life,” from the market, the publisher said today in a statement.
      “Little, Brown today sent a notice to retail and wholesale accounts asking them to stop selling copies of the book and to return unsold inventory to the publisher for full credit,” said Michael Pietsch, senior vice president and publisher of Little, Brown.”


      Joseph Biden had to withdraw from the Democratic Presidential nomination after he was found plagiarizing speeches.

      “Democratic presidential candidate Joseph R. Biden Jr., a U.S. senator from Delaware, was driven from the nomination battle after delivering, without attribution, passages from a speech by British Labor party leader Neil Kinnock. A barrage of subsidiary revelations by the press also contributed to Biden’s withdrawal: a serious plagiarism incident involving Biden during his law school years; the senator’s boastful exaggerations of his academic record at a New Hampshire campaign event; and the discovery of other quotations in Biden’s speeches pilfered from past Democratic politicians.”


  5. Bored 9 years ago

    I wont be surprised if SRK knew his speech was plagiarized – as Sputnik said, India does not care abt intellectual rights, plagiarism, copyrights etc. Every celebrity keeps paid personnel to prepare his/her speeches – so i wont mind giving him the benefit of doubt, but its still his responsibility.

    As for plagiarizing silly lines – i think that makes SRK look worse, does not help.

  6. Anjanpur685Miles 9 years ago

    Havent heard or read the speech, (maybe all the crap abt his kids and parents stuff as usual) but did he mention that he did not have money to buy a cake for his Bdays during his childhood years?

    • hithere 9 years ago

      I laugh when Sushmita Sen would suggest that she was kind of poor when competing for Miss India (She didn’t have money to buy designer gowns).

  7. John Galt 9 years ago

    Reminds me of Aroon Puri’s shameless plagiarism act

    • Author
      sputnik 9 years ago

      Remember reading about that India Today plagiarism before. Can’t believe he did it in a editorial that too with his signature.

  8. Jealous hater of srk 9 years ago

    When SRK clearly mentioned it was a recycled speech what’s this controversy all about watch it its gud to see dat this post had only three comments before dat too all by Admin now it has sum 11 and counting Now you know what attracts more eyeballs :-p

  9. sauravjha 9 years ago

    I would like to bring into notice another article related to SRK’s speech!
    Read and decide for yourself! :-

  10. Anjanpur685Miles 9 years ago

    I am sorry..

    But despite trying to be neutral so hard. This site stinks of SRK fanaticism. A loudmouth’s blabbering is being discussed here ..actually !!! ….haha..

    • Baba 9 years ago

      LOL. i hope you dont apologise later for the above coment. 😀 i agree that the topic doesnt deserve any importance. this is why i didnt make a single comment in the thread 😎 i think its known that srk copies quotes from others in interviews all the time.may be this is a issue for those who think very highly of him

  11. saurabh 9 years ago

    thanx @redemmon and @saurabhjha for posting the link otherwise sputnik was abt to sue srk(kidding)
    @ baba point is not that srk copies quotes or nt, rather he gives credit or not. please read carefully.
    and i dnt think he generally copies otherwise there may be many blogs have been posted till now.

    at the end blogger got his 5 minute fame, and this topic also got many views. so srk is right in one of his comment on AK during gajni release, that srk sells in Indian market.

    @anjanpur – it depends on the number of fan a star has, aamir dnt have that much, and his fans also commenting on this post. an dmoreover its abt what is truth and what is half truth.

  12. Author
    sputnik 9 years ago

    He said “recycled speech” so that means it is borrowed from other sources? I don’t think so. He meant to say its a recycled speech of his meaning he gives the same speech or variations of it at different places.

    I have seen the speech and he did not quote Rowling in this speech period.

    Now even if he quoted Rowling at one place does not absolve him of the need to quote Rowling here. Joseph Biden got into trouble because of the very same reason.

    “Biden ran for president 20 years ago and saw his campaign consumed by scandal after senior aides to campaign rival Mike Dukakis, the former governor of Massachusetts, made sure reporters saw that Biden had plagiarized a campaign speech from Neil Kinnock, then the leader of the British Labour Party. Biden had mentioned Kinnock in previous deliveries of that speech, though not in the one distributed to the press.”

    • hithere 9 years ago

      I see in Yale speech also, he used the same/similar sentences without acknowledgment. I don’t think he wrote those speeches. He must have given this task to his staff and this is what you get because we don’t have system of proper acknowledgement.

  13. aryan 9 years ago
  14. Bored 9 years ago

    Its appalling to read comments like ‘blogger got 5 mins of fame’. Ideal example of fanaticism vs. intellectual rights.

  15. saurabh 9 years ago

    @bored nd @sputnik plz read carefully the blog which Saurav jha nd @ redemmon poster, in that no mention of yale speech, its the mention of ypo speech so please now just go to youtube nd search for ypo speech. Plz.
    nd abt fan thing @bored u can check my many comments un which I my self criticized SRK for various reason. I m taking his side because in my view he mentioned j.k. Rowling. Nd moreover if u read the second blog, u urself will get many answer. Like since j.k.rowling speech is famous urself, y would someone copy that without taking her name. So he mentioned. May be at sima he ws in hurry or he didn’t feel like to mention again her bane, to maintain the flow. Now sputnik will ask me y there is no flow reason at ypo. To that i’ll say please see ypo video, in that SRK started saying those lines at different speed nd at different point than aima. Nd if u read the blog closely, the blogger which sputnik poster havn’t done any research nd making mistake in comment section.
    now u’ll add one more part, since the aima speech nd too speech has similarity so may be the guy who is preparing speech forget to mention j.k. Rowling thing in the paper at aima, coz there is no reason y SRK will not mention j.k. Rowling speech(since its popularity), at one place nd NT in other place. Period. Moreover it also the case of a perspective too.
    bored plz read all my comments in many post, to find had I criticize SRK or NT. Nd y I said 5 minute fame coz the blogger hasn’t done any research..

    • hithere 9 years ago

      Yale speech has same things on Poverty and no mention of JKR. The comments don’t become yours if you credit at on place.

      ps – Is there any other place which can show YPO speech other than Google Doc. Video or transcript? Otherwise I would assume it is just a spin from PR.

      • hithere 9 years ago

        The point is you can find many instances of AIMA speech but nothing in public space about YPO speech.

      • Author
        sputnik 9 years ago

        I searched for that YPO speech and could not find any link. The one who is defending SRK in that blog and linking to that google doc is Shailaja who is SRK’s PR.

        And if you could not find any other link then I don’t think there is any 🙂

        • hithere 9 years ago

          That GoogleDoc is probably her account because that text is highlighted.

        • hithere 9 years ago

          YPO Delhi happened on 21st May 2009. Found some snippets but not the transcript.

  16. Bored 9 years ago

    Is this the first time SRK gave a speech at US university? It seems he was aware that those lines are direct quotes from JKR’s speech (since his publicist says he made a joke of it @YPO). And knowingly so, he either forgot to mention ‘as JKR said’ or intentionally plagiarized her words. (He probably isnt even aware how serious offense plagiarism is in US – is he really that ignorant???).

    Either way it is a gaffe, and a shame! He takes so much pride in declaring himself as the King and whatnot – and cant behave as a respectable personality at a global platform? Pathetic!

    And those trying to save his ass are even more disgusting (which includes his shameless publicist). All these idiots shud stop this silly defense and publicly apologize if they have any iota of self-dignity and integrity.

  17. Author
    sputnik 9 years ago

    Its not just those two paras from J.K. Rowling’s speech that were plagiarized. The speech has more.

    “It’s not just J.K. Rowling he ripped off without attribution. In the same speech, Shah Rukh Khan also ripped off, without attribution, a writer from, William H. Cosby, Jr. (Bill Cosby), the founder of Honda, Thomas Henry Huxley, John Wooden and Eddie Rickenbacker . And you may yet find a few more!

    The JK Rowling plagiarism was originally pointed out by Agratha Dinakaran in her blog

    Starting with the assumption that “when there’s smoke, there’s fire”, I looked a little closer. There were at least 6 other cases I found of using uncredited sources – or plagiarism, if you’d like to call it that.

    It was apparently a speech about failure. Guess what, SRK – you failed big time here!

    I sourced a transcript of SRK’s talk here:

    Here’s the umm, source of Bollywood inspiration, in each case:

    1. From SRK’s talk:

    Take Warren Buffet. Here’s a guy who must get asked five times a day how he became the most successful investor of his era. His answers — “Reinvest your profits,” “Limit what you borrow,” etc.—are no different from what any fool could tell you. Buffet isn’t being cagey. He simply doesn’t know. Success is a wonderful thing, but it tends not to be the sort of experience that we learn from. We enjoy it; perhaps we even deserve it. But we don’t acquire wisdom from it.

    1a. Actual uncredited source: Timothy Noah

    2. From SRK’s talk:

    Let me tell you…poverty is not an ennobling experience at all. Poverty entails fear and stress and sometimes depression

    2a. Actual uncredited source: J K Rowling of Harry Potter fame, speech at Harvard University

    3. From SRK’s talk:

    the true road to success is not just the desire for success but a fear of failure.

    3a. Actual uncredited source: Bill Cosby the comedian

    4. From SRK’s talk:

    There is a well- known story of a bank president who was asked the secret of his success. “Right decisions,” he replied. “How do you get to know how to make right decisions?” came the follow-up question. “Experience,” was the answer. “Well, how do you get experience?” asked his interrogator. “Wrong decisions,” he replied.

    4a. Actual uncredited source: Soichiro Honda, of Honda Motor Co.

    5. From SRK’s talk:

    life is a not just a check list of acquisitions, attainments and fulfillments. Your qualifications and c.v. don’t really matter. Jobs don’t matter. Instead life is difficult and complicated…and beyond anyone’s control and the humility to know that by respecting your failures will help you survive it’s vicissitudes.

    5a. Actual uncredited source: JK Rowling again, same speech

    6. From SRK’s talk:

    There is the greatest practical benefit in making a few failures in life.

    6a. Actual uncredited source: Thomas Huxley

    7. From SRK’s talk:

    Success is never final….just like failure is never fatal.

    7a. Actual uncredited source: John Wooden

    8. From SRK’s talk:

    Courage is doing what YOU are afraid to do. Personally scared to do in whichever capacity you work. There can be no courage unless you are scared.

    8a. Actual uncredited source: Eddie Rickenbacker

    So what does all this say to me? First, SRK’s own story doesn’t need this hash of stolen paragraphs and sentences around it – it is effective in itself. Second, that SRK’s speech was plagiarised right from the Yale version itself – and not just AIMA which was the repeat of the Yale performance. And third – the Bollywood formula works. Plagiarise some nice bits from a raft of overseas sources, put it together with a little of your own stuff. Then your audience: Indian management and Indian movie goers will lap it up and think you’re a genius.

    Or will they, for much longer?”


  18. saurabh 9 years ago

    @sputnik many of ur pointed dialogues actually look like the dialogues which people use to show off, like the bank manager example, is almost shared by many on fb nd nobody credited to original writer. I even didn’t know who said it before u pointed out, so imp many of ur points looks lame to me. Its like saying kitne aadmi the nd giving credit to saleem javed everytime wen u say. Nd i really think the j.k.rowling he should hv mentioned at aima, because of this silly mistake people r questioning him.but i think that may be the mistake dn by his pr, as there is no reason y he mention j.k. R at one place nd nt in other. But we hv some cid people here like @hithere who r saying that he think that ypo speech blog is written by his pr again well hithere continue with ur research nd plz take sm dna sample too…
    ny way its very classic case of things going out of context, which happen with srk almost everytime. Like the one outlook article, or sivsena controversy.

    • Author
      sputnik 9 years ago

      Read comments on this thread about Biden, Kavya and Fareed Zakaria, Aroon Purie and what happened in their cases.

      Stop giving excuses that others share the same thing on FB without crediting. We are talking about SRK not crediting Rowling while giving public speeches and one at Yale. SRK should count his stars lucky that someone from the foreign media did not point out the similarity between his speech at Yale and Rowling’s speech.

      Timothy Noah, the Slate writer is already angry with SRK plagiarizing from his article. Here are his tweets.

      “So … if he paid someone to steal my wallet, he’d be blameless?”

      “Writing is how I make my living. He stole my words. Of course it’s important.”

      “In other news, I’ve been plagiarized in a speech given by an Indian actor called Shah Rukh Khan ”

      There needs to be a youtube video or transcript from some news site about that YPO speech. His PR cannot type up something in a word document and use it as a defense.

      Anyway this is my last comment on this topic.


      @John Galt,

      The speech writer did not give the speech. Its SRK who gave the speech so he is the one who will get the flak. Apologizing and firing his speech writer is the least he can do.

      • hithere 9 years ago

        Even if you credit at one place, the speech doesn’t become yours to use it any number of times. His speech writer is at fault but as public figure you have to accept mistake, make sure it doesn’t happen again and move on.

  19. John Galt 9 years ago

    I don’t know why Srk is receiving so much flak here..Its his speech writer who should be blamed. 😆

    Its foolish of people to believe that speeches such as the one being quoted could be written by srk himself.. Come on..the guy takes pride in doing movies like CE, OSO and can anyone expect class from him? 😀

  20. John Galt 9 years ago

    Sputnik, Hithere,

    Sarcasm ki maa-behen kar di tum dono ne

    • hithere 9 years ago

      My comment was just complementing Sputnik’s comment 🙂

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